Enhanced Lotus Esprit Turbo Challenge Released for Atari STE

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Will Lotus Esprit Turbo Challenge on Amiga ever be bettered? Well, no, of course not. For many retro gaming fans it was THE dual player racing game. But there is now a threat to the Amiga from the old enemy: Atari ST.

Specifically, the Atari STE, (not that guy down the arcades who was awesome at Pac-Man) upon which developers have been working on an enhanced version of Lotus.

Revising graphics and sound from the original game, this new edition has been inspired by the Amiga version. If the video is anything to go by, it really showcases what the Atari STE could do. This version has been created by Jonathan Thomas (graphics), Jamie Hamshere (sound) and Grazey/PHF (loader).

Inspired by Jonathan Thomas relatively recently discovering the difference between the basic Atari ST version and the Amiga Lotus, this new version features

We’re not going to lie – the Amiga version is the best version of this game available and has provided a heavy dose of inspiration for us. We’ve not tampered with the core gameplay in any way as you can’t improve upon perfection! However, you will see and hear the following improvements:

– The road is rendered by the Blitter chip and features much more graphical detail than the original;

– All roadside scenery and cars are rendered by the Blitter chip and move smoothly side-to-side (as opposed to jerking along in 16 pixel increments on the original);

– The background mountains are rendered by the Blitter chip and scroll smoothly side-to-side (as opposed to jerking along in 4 pixel increments on the original);

– The sky features a colourful gradient of raster bars making use of the enhanced STE palette;

– The road and roadside colours are refined to make use of the enhanced STE palette;

– A sampled engine noise and sampled sound effects are present. You can even have music, engine sound and sound effects simultaneously;

– Provisional support for Mega STE running at 16MHz (hold Shift on boot to enable).

Users of STFM machines equipped with a Blitter chip can also enjoy the game, with the following compromises:

– The colours used in the sky gradient are reduced due to the limited palette in the standard ST model;

– No sampled engine noise or sound effects are available.

You can download Lotus Esprit Turbo Challenge STe from Atari Mania and you’ll find the source code on GitHub.